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Christopher Foster

Christopher Foster

Senior Lecturer in Music

  • Email address
  • Phone number 01902 323209
  • Location Walsall
  • Faculty Faculty of Arts
  • Institute School of Performing Arts
  • Areas of expertise


Chris Foster is Course Leader for BMus (Hons) Music, and lectures on the undergraduate and postgraduate music programmes. He studied composition with Richard Steinitz and John Casken at Huddersfield Polytechnic in the 1980s, and later with Michael Finnissy at the University of Wolverhampton, with whom he gained his PhD in composition. He also studied flute with David Haslam (Northern Sinfonia), Alan Lockwood (BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra) and Ron Marlow (Halle Orchestra). He is also a trained teacher of the Alexander Technique and a qualified music librarian.

Chris has had a varied career as a composer, music teacher and teacher of the Alexander Technique. He has also worked in the field of music librarianship. Chris has taught at the University of Wolverhampton since 2004 and lectures in a range of areas including composition, orchestration, analysis, styles and genres, music theory, music in its cultural contexts and academic skills. He also directs the University of Wolverhampton Contemporary Music Ensemble and Orchestra.

Composition. Musicology. Ethnomusicology. 

  • 2014  PhD Composition
  • 2004  MA Music (composition) (distinction)
  • 1998  Dip. Lib. Librarianship
  • 1987  Diploma Professional Association of Alexander Teachers (PAAT)
  • 1983  BA(Hons) Music, Huddersfield Polytechnic
  • Professional Associations and Memberships
  • CoMA (Contemporary Music for All)

Selected Compositions and Conference Papers

  • Song of the dispossessed for choir, piano, string ensemble and percussion (2014),
  • Girl with brown eyes (sea shanty) for a cappella choir and chorus (2014),
  • Somebody’s Jig, for piano (2014),
  • ‘Each Through His Own Eyes’: three songs for soprano, flute and viola, (2013),
  • Ariach all Gabbe Levena: for viola and piano, (2012),
  • Tilting Martha: six dance sequences for mixed ensemble: for flute, cello, harp and percussion, (2011),
  • Desire Lines: for trumpet and piano, without pianist. (2010),
  • A Rehearsal for Extinct Polyphonies: for string trio and wind quartet, (2009),
  • Four Biomechanical Studies: for flute, oboe, bassoon, viola, (2009),
  • After Tanguedia 3: for wind quintet, (2004),
  • Two Movements for String Quartet, (2004),
  • My own heart let me more have pity on, let: for a cappella choir, (2004),
  • Kazimierz: for viola and piano, (2004),
  • Proceedings of the 9th Conference on Interdisciplinary Musicology – CIM14. Berlin, Germany 2014 Blurring the lines: an integrated compositional model for digital music instrument design. With Mat Dalgleish,
  • InTime Symposium 2012: Negotiations: composer/performer dialogue, ‘Ariach all gabbe Levena: notation is not a passive function’, Coventry University, 19–20 October 2012,
  • Music Research Seminar, ‘Composition: product or process?’, University of Wolverhampton, May 2004,
  • Society for Musical Analysis Newsletter, July 2009. Review of Sounds New Conference 2009, Polish Music Since 1945, Canterbury Christ Church University.
  • 2013­–2015           Lecturer in music (Course Leader), University of Wolverhampton
  • 2004–2013           Part-time VL in Music, University of Wolverhampton
  • 2010–2013           Part-time VL in Music, Coventry University
  • 2011–2012           Research Assistant British Academy-funded project

Finnissy’s Third String Quartet Amanda Bayley (Bath University) Beth

Elverdam (Aarhus University)

  • 2002–2010           Academic Resources Librarian (SSPAL–Music), University of Wolverhampton
  • 1998 – 2002         Resource Librarian, University of Wolverhampton
  • 1988 – 1996         Music Librarian, Reading Public Library
  • 1987 – 1988         Self-employed teacher of the Alexander Technique, Birmingham
  • 1984 – 1988         Peripatetic Instrumental Teacher, Shropshire: Meole Brace School, Priory School
  • 1984 – 1988         Self-employed (part time): private tuition on composition, music theory, flute, piano, classical guitar


  • 2014  PhD Composition
  • 2004  MA Music (composition) (distinction)
  • 1998  Dip.Lib. Librarianship
  • 1987  Diploma Professional Association of Alexander Teachers (PAAT)
  • 1983  BA(Hons) Music, Huddersfield Polytechnic

Teaching Responsibilities

  • Composition, research and development,music theory,styles and genres, music and the moving image, music in its cultural contexts, director of the University of Wolverhampton Contemporary Music Ensemble and Orchestra.

Non-Teaching Responsibilities

  • Course Leader for BMus (Hons) Music
  • Member of the University Ethics Committee

Postgraduate Supervision:

Chris Payne: Research into the concepts required to implement successful pedagogical approaches with regards to visual programming in the UK compulsory education sector.

Chris is available for PhD supervision in the following areas:

  • Composition as found material
  • Composition and the open score principle
  • Composition and collaboration
  • Musical indeterminacy
  • Philosophy of composition
  • Music and cultural context